9 Ways To Reduce Food Waste! Save Money And Help The Environment
We can all use tips to save on food waste. I cannot tell you how many times I have used part of a tomato, lemon, or onion and the rest sat in the fridge until it was no good. If you are thinking about how to combat food waste, the 9 ways to reduce food waste below are a great place to start.
There’s a lot of food scraps we throw out that we could use. Hubby uses the thick bottom stalk of the broccoli that most throw away. He grates it into broccoli chips and cooks them in butter, they are DELICIOUS! No lie!
We definitely need to learn how to use more of our food to save money and help the environment.
Did you know that more than one-third of all the food produced around the globe is either wasted or spoiled?
Wasting food is a worldwide epidemic.
In our country alone, Americans throw away up to 40% of the food that they buy. That’s crazy when you think that you pay 100% for the food and then you throw 40% of your money away each time you buy groceries!
With all the organic matter in the landfills, 20% of them emit methane emissions, a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to other problems.
But, we can do our part! There are different ways we can reduce the food waste in our household.
1. Make A Grocery List
Overbuying can lead to food waste. So before you head to your favorite store, make a grocery list first and learn to stick to it.
Make sure you download our FREE Printable Coupon Grocery Shopping List! This will help you save even more and be more organized when shopping with coupons!
Plan your meals for the whole week and list all the ingredients that you need. Adding double duty items will not only save on waste, it will save you money too!
Get our FREE Meal Planning printable here <—
If you will be adding fresh thyme or cilantro to your meal, plan another meal that involves the same ingredient. Use the budget that you will save to buy a snack or place it to your next week’s budget.
Plus, herbs are SUPER simple and easy to grow yourself. You can save quite a bit by growing your own, and they don’t need much room.
2. Skip Fresh Produce
The beautiful colors of fresh vegetables and fruits may tempt you during grocery time. However, fresh produce can easily spoil.
Instead, turn your cart to the frozen section.
Frozen foods are also cheaper than the fresh ones!
3. Repurpose The Scraps
Use your meat and vegetable scraps and turn them into homemade stocks. You can also use the fruit rinds and zest to add flavor to your meals.
Hubby cooks a whole chicken in the crock-pot, we eat the meat and he continues to cook the carcass to make homemade chicken broth. We don’t buy store bought chicken broth we make it and freeze it in freezer bags. Anytime a recipe calls for chicken stock/broth – we grab a bag or two from the freezer! It’s much healthier and not processed so, that a plus, as well!
4. Think About The Expiration Dates
Words such as use-by, sell-by, and expiration dates can be confusing — but they all mean different things. These dates serve as the quality and freshness of the ingredient, not the time they will go bad.
A lot of people are throwing out food because of these dates.
Before you throw them in the trash can, research more about what date means. You may also want to stock your pantry like the stores do. Bring everything that expires first in front of what expires later to make sure you are using them in the right order.
5. Store Them Where You Can Easily See Them
Out of sight, out of mind.
Keep your items where you can easily see them. You might often wonder where your newly bought carrots, asparagus, or lettuce went because they slip into the crisper abyss.
Learn how to store your favorite fruits and vegetables too.
Some can ripen fast and they will speed up the ripening of the ones nearby. Place these items, like mangoes, apples, or lettuce into airtight storage to keep them fresher for longer.
Another trick is to wash your produce first before you place them in your fridge. This will not only keep the whole bag from going bad — it will also increase your chances of enjoying their crispiness and deliciousness.
6. Keep Preserved Or Canned Foods
When you visit the shelves of your favorite local store, you might notice the preserved and pickled foods. Canned foods are gaining popularity. But, did you know that this practice has been around since the early centuries?
Preserved foods have a longer shelf life. It also enhances the taste of your favorite fruits and vegetables. You may either spend some time and effort and make your own preserved foods from any excess food or purchase the ones available in your local supermarket.
7. Share The Extra
If your family can’t eat them anymore, donate them.
There are a lot of local pantries and food banks which accept food donations. There may also be friends and families around your neighborhood who will appreciate a little extra.
8. Use What You Have
Before you head to the grocery store, check your pantry. Plan all the recipes for the week from the ingredients sitting in your fridge or pantry.
Keeping your fridge and pantry clean and organized can help you know what you have and what you can use for meals.
9. Get Your Hands On Composting
Skip throwing away and start composting in your garden.
A lot of ingredients, from your coffee grounds to the celery stalks can be composted. You can also use this compost for your mini garden.
Check This Article: Growing Vegetables In Potting Soil Bags!
Buying less food means more money and less waste. You are not only helping your family get a little extra from your budget, you are also helping the environment.
What do you think about controlling the ingredients and food that goes to your kitchen? Do you think it’s a good practice?